Just like the road that bears his family’s name, Carl Newberger’s life cut a path through Lutz.
Born to one of the original Lutz Pioneer families, Carl and his brother, Calvin, were the community’s first set of twins.
Newberger attended Lutz Elementary and later served in the U.S. Army in the Korean War. He played an instrumental role in the building of Tims Memorial Church in Lutz, where he served as a deacon.
He died on July 4 at the age of 94.
Newberger embedded himself in community life, said his daughter, Tina Hevel.
“He was always constantly busy doing something. He was never the type of guy to just sit around, and I think that’s pretty evident with his involvement in the Lutz community,” she said.
He was active in the local Boy Scouts, serving as a troop leader for years. He enjoyed bowling, taking part in The Odd Couples at Royal Lanes. He played softball, too.
He was an avid outdoorsman, and enjoyed hunting and fishing for most of his life. He competed in shooting tournaments and was a member of the Florida Highway Patrol Auxiliary.
His name comes up several times in the local history book, “Sawmills, Citrus, Critters and Crackers: Life in Early Lutz,” by Elizabeth Riegler MacManus and Susan MacManus.
He and his brother, Calvin, were part of the ribbon-cutting ceremony when the former Vernon Road, a sand trail, was paved in the 1930s and turned into what is now known as Lutz Lake Fern Road. The twin boys rode in a Model T flatbed truck, holding little American flags at the ceremony, the local history book recounts.
The book also shares the story about Newberger attempting, but ultimately failing, to rescue a 7-year-old boy who drowned near First United Methodist Church of Lutz.
After being involved in Lutz for decades, Newberger retired from a 30-year career with Anheuser-Busch and moved to Webster, Wisconsin, in 1993.
Although he has passed on, the name Newberger will live on in Lutz, thanks to the road that has existed since the late 1800s.
Originally, it was a dirt trail that led to the residence of Wolfgang and Mary Newberger, Carl’s great grandparents.
Briefly it was renamed Feinsinger Road, after other early settlers of the area. But it reverted back to Newberger Road to honor longtime lawman and former Tampa Chief of Police Fred Newberger.
“We’re very proud of that road,” Hevel added.
A Celebration of Life Ceremony for Newberger is scheduled on Aug. 13 at 11 a.m., at Lutz Community Church, 601 Sunset Lane, in Lutz, the same one he helped to build back when it was Tims Memorial.
His family expects several members of the community to be there, and possibly they will share stories.
It won’t be a depressing affair, his daughter said.
“We’re going to have an uplifting ceremony. Because that’s who he was. He had funny stories, so it’s not going to be all depressing and what not. We’re going to celebrate my dad’s life, much of it that was here in Lutz.”
She added: “My cousin, Barry (Newberger), who was Calvin’s son, will have even more stories to tell at the ceremony. That’s just who Carl, and Calvin, were — always involved in something.”
Carl is survived by his wife, Suzanne; his daughter, Tina Hevel and Robert Hardy; his granddaughter, Jessica Vickery and Jason Vickery; great-granddaughter, Bella Vickery; and his first wife, Phyllis Newberger, and his stepson, Pete Okins.
His survivors also include several nieces and nephews in Lutz and Land O’ Lakes.
Carl Newberger Celebration of Life
When: Aug. 13, 11 a.m.
Where: Lutz Community Church, 601 Sunset Lane
Published August 10, 2022